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What Is an Engine Splash Shield and Is It Really Necessary?

What Is an Engine Splash Shield and Is It Really Necessary?

27th May 2022

If you've ever jacked up your vehicle and inspected the undercarriage, you may recall seeing a large plastic covering. Known as an engine splash shield, it's included on many cars, trucks and SUVs. When driving over bumps, you may scratch or otherwise damage your vehicle's engine splash shield. Alternatively, the engine splash shield may completely fall off. So, what is an engine splash shield, and does your vehicle really need one?

What Is an Engine Splash Shield?

An engine splash shield is a protective covering that's mounted to the undercarriage. It sits between the engine and the ground below your vehicle.

You can find engine splash shields in different shapes and designs. Most of them, however, are made of plastic. They don't contain any metal parts, nor do they contain any wires or electrical components. Engine splash shields are simple, all-plastic coverings that are mounted to the undercarriage.

Purpose of an Engine Splash Shield

The primary purpose of an engine splash shield is to protect the engine from water and debris. It serves a physical barrier between your vehicle's engine and the road. You can drive over puddles without fear of the dirty water soaking your vehicle's engine. The engine splash shield will shield the engine so that it remains dry and clean.

In addition to keeping the engine dry and clean, engine splash shields provide aerodynamic benefits. While available in different shapes and designs, most engine splash shields are aerodynamic. They are designed to create the least amount of air resistance. With their aerodynamic design, engine splash shields may provide a small improvement to gas mileage.

The engine splash shield will protect other parts of your vehicle as well. It will typically cover the oil pan and suspension, for instance.

Replacing a Damaged Engine Splash Shield

If your vehicle has a damaged engine splash shield, you should consider replacing it. A damaged engine splash shield isn't a serious issue. Nonetheless, it's still an important part. It will protect your vehicle's engine from water and debris, and thanks to its aerodynamic design, the engine splash shield may improve your vehicle's gas mileage.

There are original equipment manufacturer (OEM) engine splash shields as well as aftermarket engine splash shields. OEM engine splash shields typically cost more, but you can rest assured knowing they will fit perfectly -- assuming you choose the right type. Aftermarket engine splash shields, on the other hand, cost less, but you'll have more options from which to choose.